5 Movie Reboots That Must Be Stopped
By this point in the game, complaining about Hollywood's hard-on for reboots is so old hat that Hollywood probably has a reboot of your reboot complaints in the works. It takes particularly boneheaded details to warrant making fun of remakes anymore.
Luckily for us, the people behind these upcoming reboots have risen to the challenge.
They're Inexplicably Rebooting Men in Black
Hey, you guys remember how awesome Men in Black was? How it struck a great balance between action, comedy, and (b)romance, like a sci-fi version of The Princess Bride? And you remember how, despite the fact that the movie ended in a way that perfectly wrapped up the story, you wanted them to remake the same movie, only with new people? Congratulations, all four of you are getting your wish! It turns out the cocaine pile at Sony Pictures was getting a bit small and they decided to give the MIB franchise a fresh take by redoing one-third of a series that isn't even old enough to buy cigarettes yet.
Independence Day is already on two packs a day, unfiltered, sadly.
The script for the movie that nobody asked for (and everyone is actively asking against) will be written by Oren Uziel, who is best known for writing the script for 22 Jump Street (the sequel to an adaptation of a TV show) and the upcoming Mortal Kombat screenplay (a reboot of a franchise based on an adaptation of a video game), and neither Tommy Lee Jones nor Will Smith will be reprising their roles.
Jones' departure is expected, since they were out of ideas for how to shoehorn him back into the franchise (having already de-erased his character's memory in MIB 2 and then replaced him completely in MIB 3), but what about Will Smith? It can't be that hard to write another end-credits rap song, right? Well, despite the fact that MIB 3 raked in over $600 million, the studio hasn't been able to make much money on the franchise because Tommy Lee and Will demand such high salaries. With a reboot, they can still cash in on the series' goodwill while using cheaper actors to play the leads, so don't be surprised if Agents J and K mysteriously transform into Bow Wow and Tom Berenger.
The Producers and Choreographers of The Raid Bring You The Raid
The premise of 2011 Indonesian action film The Raid sounds a bit like one of those locked-room Flash games: The protagonists must ascend 30 floors of an apartment building, only instead of inscrutable puzzles blocking their way, it's an entire compound of heavily armed criminals. There's probably some extra plot stuff we're glossing over, but all you need to know is that it's 90 minutes and 30 stories of shootin' and punchin' and stabbin' and 'splodin'.
And kickin' and neck breakin' and-
Despite already getting a Blu-ray release in the U.S., Sony has decided to reboot The Raid, because this is America, and we'll be goddamned if we're going to read subtitles while we watch a ballet of carnage. And this is not to be confused with The Raid 2, which is a sequel to The Raid, although we can see how that would be confusing, since The Raid the sequel and The Raid the reboot are going to be released a year apart, and both are being produced by the original production company, feature the original choreographers, and will have the original writer/director brought on as executive producer.
How is this easier than just re-dubbing the first movie, again?
The New Live-Action Peter Pan Is Avoiding Racism by Making the Entire Cast White
Despite coming during the peak of Disney's Golden Age and being held up as a prime example of the genre, Peter Pan does have its unsavory aspects, too. Specifically, the scene in which three wealthy white kids (one of whom is wearing a goddamn top hat) are entertained by painfully racist caricatures of Native Americans singing a song about why all the stereotypes about them are accurate.
Still, in the upcoming live-action Peter Pan, you can keep the character of Tiger Lily and the Indians, just don't make it ... you know, so fucking racist. Director Joe Wright took this to heart by casting super white Rooney Mara as Tiger Lily. Naturally, the whitewashing accusations began to fly, but Wright assuaged concerns, stating that Neverland would be a veritable melting pot of ethnicities and nationalities, featuring white people from all over the world, like America ...
... Australia ...
... and America!
Remaking The Mummy, Only More Modern
You would think that a film series based on a mummy would have limited options. You know it's going to involve an ancient curse and be set in Egypt, and a pyramid will most likely make an appearance. Even Abbott and Costello only had enough material for one movie, and The Mummy has already squeezed out six movies from its rolled toothpaste tube of a franchise at this point. Once you've added the Rock to the cast, where do you go from there? Two the Rocks?
"Haha, there aren't enough protein shakes on Earth for that to be possible."
Universal has decided to reboot the franchise, regardless of how many the Rocks decide to get involved. This time, however, it's going to be set in modern times, which is really limiting your options for sequels; the only reason the original movies got away with the whole "How has this cursed tomb not been nuked into oblivion by every country on Earth?" thing was because it was set in the 1920s and '30s, before cellphones were a thing. A sentient sandstorm in the age of YouTube is not something that people are going to stand for.
We're getting ahead of ourselves discussing sequels at this point, since they can't seem to get anyone to direct the damn thing. After the original director, Len Wiseman, dropped out, replacement Andy Muschietti left the project due to creative differences. Apparently Universal wanted a more family-friendly action movie than Muschietti was prepared to deliver. (The Mummy featured anti-Semitism and a man getting eaten alive by scarab beetles, how much darker do you really want to go?)
This, of course, brings up the question of Brendan Fraser and if he will be in the reboot. Well, setting it in modern times would peg his character's age at about 130, so that kinda closes the book on that. But wait! Fraser had a cameo in the first G.I. Joe movie (which he literally begged for). Independent of any official sanction from Universal, or really anyone involved with The Mummy franchise, Fraser declared his G.I. Joe character to be a descendent of his Mummy character, setting the stage for his return in the new movies. Bulletproof, Brendan!
"Hey, I'm not supposed to play the mummy! Why are you bandaging me!?!"
"It'll be OK, Brendan."
A Bunch of '80s and '90s Action Vehicles (Without the Original Stars)
If you thought the Point Break remake currently in production wasn't baffling enough, good news! There's plenty more blatant nostalgia pandering in the works, starting with a remake of the classic Bloodsport, where Jean-Claude Van Damme beats the shit out of bad guys for 90 minutes. If that's not your style, maybe you'd like the reboot of Kickboxer, where Jean-Claude Van Damme beats the shit out of bad guys for 100 minutes. Naturally, Van Damme is not involved with either of these, let alone both. Having Van Damme beat the shit out of people in two places at once? That's just absurd.
"We were going to ask about a cameo, but he's clearly moved on to bigger and better things."
But JCVD isn't the only one having the skeletons of his career dug up and thrown out on stage for one more showstopper. A remake of the 1993 John Lithgow thriller Cliffhanger has already been greenlit, although Lithgow will not be reprising his role, nor will Sylvester Stallone, who played a small role in the original as well. And, just for good measure, a sequel to Top Gun is back in the works after originally being shelved following Tony Scott's death. This reboot would feature a new hotshot pilot pushing the edge of the envelope in drones, because all that was missing from the original film was the pulse-pounding action of Maverick sitting in an air-conditioned trailer, staring at computer monitors.
When he's not remaking Van Damme films, Chris writes for his website and tweets.